San Francisco Art Institute Receives Grant from National Endowment for the Arts for Mobile Engagement Project

San Francisco Art Institute Receives Grant from National Endowment for the Arts for Mobile Engagement Project

National Endowment for the Arts (NEA) Acting Chairman Joan Shigekawa announced today that the San Francisco Art Institute (SFAI) is one of 886 nonprofit organizations nationwide to receive an NEA Art Works grant. SFAI is recommended for a $60,000 grant to support the Mobile Engagement Project, a mobile phone application that will engage users in an immersive experience of the historic SFAI campus and enhance their participation in the public programs offered by the institute. Each year, more than 30,000 people visit SFAI's historic Russian Hill campus to attend free public exhibitions and lectures, enroll in public education courses, and admire its famous 1931 Diego Rivera fresco, architecture and 360-degree views of the San Francisco Bay. The grant provides SFAI the funds to move forward with the creation of the app, virtually transforming its campus into a living exhibit and guide, contributing to student, faculty and prospective student experience. SFAI will commission artists to create the application's features and interpretive tools, and will begin accepting bids from Bay Area technology firms to develop and build the app for iPhone/iPad and Android platforms.

NEA Acting Chairman Shigekawa said, "The NEA is pleased to announce that SFAI is recommended for an NEA Art Works grant. These NEA-supported projects will not only have a positive impact on local economies, but will also provide opportunities for people of all ages to participate in the arts, help our communities to become more vibrant, and support our nation's artists as they contribute to our cultural landscape."

"SFAI is very pleased to have received this important recognition from the National Endowment for the Arts." says Charles Desmarais, President at SFAI. "This project will enable us to better engage the public and share this institution's remarkable history and present, in an innovative and imaginative way befitting the Art Institute spirit."

Art Works grants support the creation of art that meets the highest standards of excellence, public engagement with diverse and excellent art, lifelong learning in the arts, and enhancement of the livability of communities through the arts. The NEA received 1,515 eligible applications under the Art Works category, requesting more than $76 million in funding. Of those applications, 886 are recommended for grants for a total of $25.8 million.

For a complete listing of projects recommended for Art Works grant support, please visit the NEA website at

Founded in 1871, the San Francisco Art Institute (SFAI) is one of the nation's oldest and most prestigious schools of higher education in contemporary art.

SFAI is dedicated to the intrinsic value of art and its vital role in shaping and enriching society and the individual. As a diverse community of working artists and scholars, the Institute provides its students with a rigorous education in the fine arts and preparation for a life in the arts through an immersive studio environment, an integrated liberal arts curriculum, and critical engagement with the world.

For more information about SFAI, visit